Majorities mean nothing

Published 12:00 am Thursday, April 21, 2005

The editor of the News Herald hit the nail smack on the head when he suggested, or stated, the city hall big spenders appear interested mainly in pleasing the affluent of our city. The majority of citizens would happily stay in a motel, or inn with less prestige and expense than a Hilton. Those who go there are merely showing off, have scads of money, or are using corporate dollars. The average citizens don’t go out looking for $25 dinners.

And most did not go for the city upping our donation to the Cultural Center by several millions tax dollars, The germ of the idea for the place stemmed from affluent citizens, as did the hotel, as did the railroad station, as did the courthouse. Less affluent citizens merely are expected to pay for &uot;playgrounds&uot; of the influential affluent. Dear Council, when you find yourself in a hole, stop digging.

Look how quickly those with horses to show (Kings?) jumped on an equestrian center in the area of Driver. Are they a majority of citizens desperately in need of such a fixture, or just nice people with enough money to own, board, feed, train, and doctor a horse? The average horse costs over three grand a year just to board. Give a cowboy a horse and all he needs is a trail to ride and we have them up in Lone Star Lakes. In the absence of a proper equestrian center, at least provide room in that location so they can fix up what they need for sandlot shows, space mainly, a place to meet. I liken horse shows to dog shows where much effort is spent to acquire ribbons. The only difference being that they ride the horse but trot the dogs in circles around a biased judge. Will our council members get all atwitter over the sudden interest in what those few desire…when hundreds, even thousands of citizens are wondering how to buy food, and Ibuprofen? All I want from this city is a chance to prove that money I saved can make me happy.

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No doubt there are many with show pets that would like a center for showoff and compete so make it multipurpose, convertible from dog to horse, maybe cats, pit bull fights, emus. But all those folks lumped together hardly represent a majority of citizens. Yes, it could be wonderful for the village of Driver, Lord knows how it could grow and entice new businesses. But if there is super great interest then the editor is right again, it would make a fine business for an entrepreneur who can lay hands on a few million.

It would draw folks from Chesapeake, Portsmouth, even from across the river…a regional equestrian center. Geez, don’t let city officials read this or they might buy it. Maybe Dana Dickens and the Hampton Roads Partnership would have an interest in extracting dollars from the regional moneyed class. Or there might be some corporate sponsors willing to foot the bills. But don’t spend my tax dollars on it. Mow the grass until the city gets out of its present debt and responsibilities…and stop sticking it to the locals until, say, when the new bridge is done, maybe after I’ve moved to the veterans cemetery. On the other hand, my garden could use the manure.

Here is a good, solid, living will. Feel free to use it. &uot;I, _________________________ (fill in the blank),

being of sound mind and body, do not wish to be kept alive indefinitely by artificial means. Under no circumstances should my fate be put in the hands of peckerwood ethically challenged politicians who couldn’t pass ninth-grade biology if their lives depended on it. If a reasonable amount of time passes and I fail to sit up and ask for a cold beer, it should be presumed that I wouldn’t get better. When such a determination is reached, I hereby instruct my spouse, children and attending physicians to pull the plug, reel in the tubes and call it a day.

Under no circumstances shall any hypocritical member of the legislature (State or Federal) enact a special law to keep me on life-support. It is my wish that these fruitcakes mind their own business; pay attention instead to the health, education and welfare of the millions of Americans who aren’t in a permanent coma. Under no circumstances shall any politicians butt into this case…no matter how many votes they’re trying to scrounge for their run for the presidency…leave me alone to die in peace.

And I couldn’t care less if a million religious zealots send e-mails to legislators in which they pretend to care about me. I know about these clowns, and I sure haven’t authorized them or Jesse Jackson to preach and crusade on my behalf. They should tend to their own flock. If any of my family goes against my wishes and turns my case into a political football, I hereby promise to return from the grave and make their life a living hell.&uot;

Be sure to sign and date it and have it witnessed.

Robert Pocklington is a

regular News-Herald columnist. E-mail him at